DBT helps you think different, do more, and worry less.
Dialectical Behavior Therapy is broken down into four components:
- Mindfulness: fully experiencing what’s happening around you and inside you, without judgment.
- Emotional Regulation: learning how to take your emotions out of the driver’s seat.
- Distress Tolerance: managing stress with more ease.
- Interpersonal Effectiveness: understanding and building relationships with those who matter most.
Let’s Break It Down:
Trouble managing all this stuff is at the core of one’s unhappiness. In DBT, we start by learning to acknowledge and accept our thoughts and feelings without judgment. Rather than worry about what will happen in the future or fixating on our past regrets, we focus on being more present to our current situation. When we’re more present, we’re more in control of how we respond to our emotions, resulting in better balance and better relationships.
DBT is all about adding skills to your toolbox that you can use to make real changes in your life.
Dialectical Behavior Therapy may be right for you if:
- You have trouble coping with stress.
- You have a difficult time managing your emotions.
- You are struggling to make changes in your behavior but are unable to do so.
- You have difficulty advocating for yourself and give in too easily to the demands of others.
Marsha Linehan, the founder of Dialectical Behavior Therapy, once said that we all want to “create a life worth living.” I like to think about it as creating a life more worth loving. Either way, DBT can help you create that life.
Click here to find out more about DBT Skills Groups and how group can help you create your life worth loving!
Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT)
CBT is based on the belief that that behaviors develop due to prior conditioning from the environment. That is, people’s experiences (i.e. their environments) lead them to develop certain thought patterns, and their behaviors are then based on these thought patterns. Oftentimes, people can develop beliefs that are irrational. However, they hold onto them as fact and act in accordance with these beliefs. Therefore, behavior is not necessarily being dictated by rational thought. This can lead to stress and negative emotions. By changing these core irrational thoughts, people can change their unwanted behaviors, thereby allowing them to lead happier lives.
CBT vs. DBT
DBT falls under the umbrella of CBT. CBT is about developing awareness for thought patterns and how they influence one’s emotional state. The goal is to discover and recognize one’s negative and irrational thinking patterns and then challenge them. By doing so, one can create healthy, rational thought patterns, thereby changing behaviors. DBT agrees with this idea but has a more specific focus. The core of DBT is validation. The goal is to help a person accept his/her uncomfortable thoughts, feelings and behaviors rather than struggle with them. Once this happens, a person can then work on changing his/her internal dialogue to one that is more positive and self-empowering.
In my practice, I put more focus on DBT skills but bring in CBT techniques as well, based on the needs of the individual. Click here to find out more about DBT Skills Group.